Why Study English at The Purbeck School?
Literacy and the ability to read, write and communicate are at the heart of learning and of later successes in life. At The Purbeck School, we take enormous pride in our ability to challenge students in these three core areas in order to help them reach their potential. Through engaging lessons which stimulate discussion, we foster an environment in which students are confident in their ability to express their understanding and opinions on a wide range of texts – both fiction and non-fiction. We promote a culture in which reading is celebrated and through strong links with the ‘Learning Resources Centre’, we are able to encourage students to read for pleasure so that they develop the literacy skills needed to become increasingly confident in their ability to express their own ideas and opinions. The novels and plays we have chosen to study contain timeless themes such as ‘inequality’, ‘abuse of power’ and remain entirely relevant and engaging for students today.
Each year we try to enrich our curriculum by allowing students opportunities to see texts in context. In the past we have taken students to see productions such as ‘War Horse’, ‘An Inspector Calls’, ‘Curious Incident of the dog in the Nighttime’ and ‘Matilda’. We also encourage our students to write for real audiences by setting termly competitions within the faculty.
How is English taught?
- KS3 – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for seven hours each fortnight.
- KS4 – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for eight hours each fortnight.
- KS5 – Students are taught (normally shared across two members of staff) for nine hours each fortnight.
Rationale and ambition for The Purbeck School English Curriculum:
- Our English curriculum aims to transmit a culturally enriching knowledge of literature to students by drawing from the literary Canon and also texts that reflect wider voices in a diverse society, developing the cultural capital of students at the school.
- Our English curriculum aims to develop empathetic and engaged citizens through careful text choice, reflecting contemporary concerns and debates such as those about class, gender and intolerance and discrimination.
- Our English curriculum aims to support students in developing confidence in expressing their own views and opinions.
- Our English curriculum aims to prepare students for work and life through the development of soft skills such as communication, teamwork, adaptability, problem solving, public speaking and leadership.
- Our English Curriculum aims to offer suitable challenge to students of all abilities.
The concepts that The Purbeck School English curriculum aims to support student progression in are:
- Understanding of text structure and coherence.
- Understanding of spelling, punctuation and grammatical rules.
- Understanding that all texts are written with intent behind them and that all texts have impact on readers.
- Understanding the impact that contextual factors has on all texts.
- Understanding how to use evidence from texts to support personal viewpoints.
- Understanding how writers choose from a variety of methods to communicate to readers and audiences.
- Understand how to experiment with written and spoken language.
National Curriculum English: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-curriculum-in-england-english-programmes-of-study
GCSE and A level Specifications: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english
Long Term Overview
As many in our school community will remember, last autumn, a much-loved former student of Purbeck, Sophie Waylen, passed away during her first term at university. In addition to being an energetic, kind and wonderful role model to others, Sophie was an excellent student of English
We have been very privileged here at The Purbeck School to have received a wealth of quality entries for this year’s annual Poetry Prize. Inspired by National Poetry Day, the students composed imaginative and engaging pieces of writing presenting their own interpretations on the theme of
To mark World Poetry Day, students were asked to find their poetic voice and contribute a line in a whole school poetry collaboration. Each tutor group reflected upon which lines best captured how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted and affected their school lives. The result was
We are now pleased to be able to announce the winners of the World Book Day competition: Congratulations to… Flo Treves – Year 7 for her wonderfully thematic reading of ‘Watership Down’: Will Summers Year 9: for his (rather
Despite our obvious separation from each other at the moment, it was wonderful to see how the pupils at The Purbeck School pulled together to celebrate World Book Day. We received hundreds of photographs from students and there is little doubt that our students are highly